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How did you eat before going Primal?

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  • How did you eat before going Primal?

    As a skeptic of the whole primal thing, I'm reading the forums and I got to wondering how people go into the whole "primal lifestyle". Specifically what was your diet like before you started?

    - Junk. Processed foots, excess carbohydrates and fat, etc..
    - Conventional.. Food pyramid like. A good amount of grains, veg/fruit, limited mean, oils/sugars. But still somewhat high in process foods.
    - Clean. Minimal processed foods, varied in input and nutrients.
    - Low Carb. Already had the reduced carb thing down pat, but not 100% primal yet.
    - Gimmick. Some other diet with narrowly defined terms/rules.

  • #2
    Primal Cyclist - No Brakes, No Gears, No Handlebars, One Wheel, No Problem


    • #3
      You forgot the "Addict" category. I was totally addicted to carbs. Pasta, bread, cookies - everything. To make matters worse, I was a vegetarian! (Brazilian mama and Argentinian papa and that meant LOTS of meat growing up - naturally, I had to rebel).

      I started dating my boyfriend and he ate a primal diet. And he was (is) in amazing shape. And he told me I could be in amazing shape too and so I started eating meat and veg and I lost 40 lbs. This was almost 6 years ago.


      • #4
        Junk. I had always been a fan of diet soda, but other than that I pretty much gorged on pasta, chocolate, candies, cakes, potato chips, white bread, pizza ... you name it. If it had refined carbs and fat, I ate it. I had never been a fan of salads, or whole bread for that matter. Oh, and of course I ate (sugary) cereals.

        It's funny though ... more than a month into the Primal diet and I don't miss that stuff. I sometimes think about how it tasted, but I have no "cravings" for it, even though I had been eating it for more than three decades.
        MikeEnRegalia's Blog - Nutrition, Dieting, Exercise and other stuff ;-)


        • #5
          Junk and obsessive calorie counting. Then feeling like crap when I couldn't resist eating even MORE junk and I went over my allowed calories. I can't tell you how many times I craved some piece of junk so badly that I was in tears over it...
          "mayness, you need to have a siggy line that says "Paleo Information Desk" or something!" -FMN <3

          I'm blogging again, at least a little bit.


          • #6
            From about 1997-2005 I was an avid bodybuilder. I ate every 2-1/2 hours even getting up in the middle of the night to down a protein shake. I ate a lot of protein, very little fat, lots of rice, oatmeal, etc. - the usual "bodybuilding staples". When we had our first child five years ago I couldn't seem to be able to fit the rigorous schedule I was keeping and I stopped working out.

            Over the next five years my weight stayed constant at 210-215 lbs (currently at 186) but I replaced my muscle with fat. You name it, I ate it. Every weekend I would pound down 2-3 chocolate bars on "movie night" along with nachos and cheese. That might happen on a Friday or a Friday and a Saturday! I drank a lot of beer, fast food, dining out etc. and I ate a lot - big portions. I have been known to eat a box of Pot-of-Gold chocolates in a day!

            This year I got sick and tired of sporting a gut and love handles so I started looking around for an alternative lifestyle that would allow me to remain lean and muscular without busting my ass for hours and living my life by my eating schedule. I discovered paleolithic diets and eventually found the Primal Blueprint. I have read all the related books (Cordain, Eades, Taubes, etc) and I think Mark has done a lovely and concise job of putting the relevant info together in a simple set of rules.
            Last edited by Mac; 04-28-2010, 02:52 PM.
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            • #7
              Varied - begin life with traditional (meat-and-two-veg, sunday roasts), add in some teenage junk, becoming "CW" healthy in late teens, to cleaner and cleaner, lowish GI, through 6 months of veganism, back to clean / fresh / local / lots of veg.
              Out of my main circle of friends, I've always been one of the healthiest eaters according to CW *and* PB. Mainly because most folk I knew lived off KFC, pizza, Mcdonalds....


              • #8
                Overly processed and/or packaged and/or carb-heavy.
                Little cartons of nonfat yogurt.
                Lean Cuisine every day for lunch.
                Or maybe a whole box of Kashi GoLean Crunch over the course of a day.
                Lots of pasta and bread.
                Low fat, low protein, high carb.
                Each bike ride produced a bunch of energy gel and bar wrappers.

                Geez, I'm 21 hours into an IF and I think I just killed my appetite thinking about what I used to eat.

                Edited to add: I also couldn't go more than 3-4 hours between meals without getting ravenous. Felt like I was always bouncing between hypoglycemic brain fog and food coma brain fog.
                Last edited by MightyMite; 04-28-2010, 02:58 PM. Reason: add eating frequency


                • #9
                  Clean. Still ate a lot of grains. I'm hoping that by eliminating grains and milk completely I will really trim up swhile maintaining muscle growth (tips appreciated). I think balancing adequate veg consumption while also aiming for <10% body fat will be a challenge. Additionally I will be dropping a lot of time and money surrounding myself with proper primal nutrition (I hate shopping and I bet Grok would also!).
                  ad astra per aspera


                  • #10
                    Lol ... let me outline a typical eating day in my "old days" for you (mind you, without any exercise):

                    Breakfast: Large bowl of sugary cereals with milk, one tall latte and some sugary/fatty piece of pastry
                    Lunch: Another piece of pastry and a snack like a hot dog or burger - I usually don't have much time for lunch
                    Afternoon: More pastry (and another latte)
                    Dinner: 250g (referring to the dry weight!) of pasta, with either sausages, cheese and eggs or an italian sauce (carbonara/tomato/etc).
                    Supper: 100g of chocolate, or 100-200g of sugary snacks like gummy bears

                    I don't even want to count the total carbs. They probably equal the net carbs, since there's no fiber. ;-)
                    MikeEnRegalia's Blog - Nutrition, Dieting, Exercise and other stuff ;-)


                    • #11
                      I'm sure I ate around 400-500g of carbs every day. I used to think (as an endurance athlete), that I couldn't possibly get enough "fuel". I wouldn't be surprised if I've been over 1,000 on numerous occasions. Of course I didn't track back then, so no idea.

                      One day I went on a long (100+ miles) bike ride, so for breakfast I had a big bowl of Cheerios (~60g carbs), a banana (26g), and a bottle of Gatorade (42g). On the ride I ate 12 Fig Newtons (132g carbs), drank 3 bottles of Infinit (255g carbs), and a bottle of Coke (78g). As soon as I got home I ate half a small box of Wheat Thins (~100g), and a PB&J sandwich (~40g). I took a shower... then I ate lunch. Yeah.

                      I'm back


                      • #12
                        My typical dish would have been: meat and potatoes. Pasta with meaty or sea-foody sauce. Rice and meat. Whole-grain toast for breakfast (with low fat Philadelphia cheese). I would drink ~ 40oz of regular Coke a day. I didn't have much of a sweet tooth (Coke aside), although I would eat small chocolate bars as snacks a couple days a week. I thought I was eating mostly healthy, Coke and beer aside.

                        I kept the diet but upped the veggies a bit and ditched the Coke and lost some weight, but not much. Went paleo and lost most of the excess body fat.


                        • #13
                          Clean, organic, etc. I had already given up gluten as found out I was sensitive so still some grains but mostly carbs from legumes, lower fat, little to no saturated fat, no cow's milk dairy, no soy, no carbs at night except veg (prednisone/insulin thing- thought why my nutritionist never suggested taking non veg/fruit carbs out all day to help insulin i do not know..) My carbs were around 115g per day. And I still couldn't lose anything! I had a monster of a sugar addiction that i kept tightly reined in, which of course meant that whenever i got some dark chocolate it was a slippery slope.. now i never crave anything.
                          Edible, adj.: Good to eat, and wholesome to digest, as a worm to a toad, a toad to a snake, a snake to a pig, a pig to a man, and a man to a worm. ~Ambrose Bierce

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                          • #14
                            Tortillas, bread, cookies, cereals, donuts...

                            Yeah those were the days...

                            The dying a slow, painful death days that is..
                            Last edited by FrankOcean; 04-28-2010, 03:11 PM.


                            • #15
                              Clean CW
                              Breakfast: Quaker sugar free low fat oatmeal & tea
                              Snack: "natural" low fat low sugar granola bar
                              Lunch: salad w/ chix breast or sandwich with "healthy" whole grain bread
                              Dinner: pasta/ steak/ or pizza primarily
                              Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, steak in one hand, chocolate in the other, yelling "Holy F***, What a Ride!"
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